Dr Lizzie Burns - Artist and scientist
The inspiration behind the collection
We all share a curiosity and fascination in the world around us, explored by artists and scientists alike. I was drawn between art and science but growing up as a teenager with a passion for Salvador Dali, the so called boundaries between art and science never quite existed. Dali created art inspired by scientific advances of his day so for me it seemed quite natural to create biologically based artwork including jewellery. I created a mitochondria necklace and made my first molecular-design - a water molecule at the tender age of 15. I have since gained a doctorate and a research fellowship from the Department of Biochemistry in the University of Oxford. Since 2002, I have been combining my passion for science and art, working as a professional artist creating paintings based on the human body and the hopes that medical research can bring. After recently working on a sculpture for GlaxoSmithKline based on a pharmaceutical drug this rekindled my passion for creating molecular designs. I have come full-circle and for me this venture is very meaningful to create more personal pieces of artwork which can brought outside a university or art gallery. It is truly delightful to create art as tokens of love and affection, to stimulate conversation, to bring a sense of playfulness and delight to everyday life, and to remind us what truly matters in life.
A career combining art and science
I has always combined a deep and active interest in science, art and a love of inspiring others. After a biology degree from the University of York, I gained my doctorate from the Department of Biochemistry in the University of Oxford followed by a 3-year research Fellowship. From an early age I started painting and have been combining my passions for art and science since my teenage years, becoming a full-time artist in 2002. My paintings are inspired by the beauty and wonder of life and I have been commissioned by organisations, universities and individuals. I have worked as artist-in-residence for the UK Medical Research Council (MRC) creating a collection of over 45 paintings and photographs. The resulting artwork was exhibited in the UK and in India at the invitation of the British Council.
Science to life: I also run workshops and events to engage and inspire others about science for organisations and science festivals. For more information take a look at www.sciencetolife.org
Media: I have featured on BBC Radio 4s Midweek and in the Guardian, the Daily Telegraph, the Times, the British Medical Journal and newspapers and radio programmes around the world.
Variety is the spice of life!